Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Blastbeat Review: Haiduk, Husk, and OFF!

I'm in the thick of exams season over here, but who needs studying when you've got shit to review?


Right from the get-go, Spellbook captivates me. It starts off firing on all cylinders, and doesn't stop or tone down until the last note abruptly brings this monster to a halt. Haiduk (or The Haiduks according to iTunes) shreds out some Behemoth-esque blackened death metal, all written and performed by vocalist-guitarist Luka Milojika. The drums, despite being programmed are produced really well, and despite the speed of Milojika's work, don't suffer from sounding too fake a la Agrophobic Nosebleed. There are a couple instances of mediocre drum sounds (usually cymbals when played fast), but for the most part, everything sounds great. This is a must-listen for anybody who digs blisteringly fast extreme music. The songs themselves are over quicker than you can blink, the longest clocking in at just over four minutes, and the shortest coming in at just over two.

Also, Haiduk is Canadian! I love hearing great bands come from the Canadian extreme metal scene. It just tickles my pickle to see bands from the Great White North contribute to the international underground metal scene. You can check out Haiduk on Facebook, and hear some songs of his on YouTube. Overall Score: 3.5/5


Husk is a new addition to the giant list of noisy, sludgey hardcore bands that have been cropping up recently. The guitars and bass are heavy as fuck, and everything either goes a snail's pace with crushing riffs, or shoots off at terminal velocity, zig-zagging its way around like a Converge riff. The one thing Hymns has going for it that separates it from the masses of Code Orange Kidses and Loma Prietas out there is the old school black metal-esque vocals shrieked throughout.

I honestly love noisy, sludgey, heavy as hell hardcore and Converge worship, but Husk doesn't really give me any great reasons to listen to them instead of just tossing on some Secret or Botch. I'm interested to see where Husk will go, but unless they start stepping up their game, they'll soon lose my ear. Check 'em out on Facebook and Bandcamp. Hymns is out April 10th. on Art As Catharsis Records. Score: 2.5/5


OFF! recently got my attention when I heard their debut First Four EPs, where they dished out SoCal hardcore punk like it's 1982 again. Keith Morris (of Black Flag and Circle Jerks fame) is as pissed as ever, and he's got the music to back it. Wasted Years was recorded on tape and while it has that awesome rawness to it, it still sounds great. It sounds like 80's hardcore in 2014, and I love it. I'd put on anything OFF! have released over Wild in the Streets or Group Sex any day. Don't get me wrong, those are both great albums and I love Keith Morris jams old or new, but to hear hardcore veterans with a modern edge is something I've been hoping for for a long time.

Wasted Years dishes out straight and to the point tracks, with all but one running under two minutes. To quote another review: They rock. They're energetic. Keith Morris is angry. Find OFF! on Facebook, and stream Wasted Years on the New York Times (!?) siteScore: 4/5

That's all for now, folks!